LBI Deborah Chapter Just ‘Barely Hanging On’

Jun 14, 2017

The Long Beach Island Chapter of the Deborah Hospital Foundation, established in 1964, is in danger of dissolving if more members don’t take a more active role, according to its president, Joan Lange.

The chapter’s chief role is to raise money for the Deborah Heart and Lung Center in Browns Mills, a medical facility that focuses exclusively on cardiac, vascular and lung diseases.

Lange, who had been president the last 15 years, said while the chapter has a membership of about 200, it has a core group of seven who are between the ages of 75 and 92.

“We’re not getting any younger,” said Lange, 85. “Some are going to have to step up or we’re not going to be around.”

From October to June, the group has monthly luncheon meetings at various locations. The one in June at the Engleside Inn in Beach Haven was termed “a closing luncheon,” since the group is not planning to resume the lunches in October. The chapter also discontinued its monthly meetings on the first Wednesday of each month at the Ethel A. Jacobsen Elementary School in Surf City.

“The luncheon served as a major fundraiser,” she said. “One time we were going to have a fund drive using collection cans, but only two people showed up.”

Lange said since the chapter formed, it has donated approximately $1 million.

“When I joined in 2000, they were raising about $50,000 a year,” she said. “Now we’re at around $10,000 a year.”

Lange said the group is still planning to go on with its bus trips, such as one in September to Niagara Falls.

“We’re barely hanging on,” she said. “By the end of the year, then we’ll know for sure where we are. It would be a shame because Deborah needs our support, and they offer a great service.”

For more information about the chapter, call Lange at 609-494-5361.

— Eric Englund

ericenglund@thesandpaper.net

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